Many people who apply for Social Security Disability have a claim which is based, at least in part, on a back injury.
The first key to developing a good Social Security Disability claim based upon an injury to the spine is to have a good quality Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Normally MRI facilities in large hospitals are preferable to the MRI facilities of small hospitals, particularly those with mobile units. The quality of the diagnostics in smaller venues often leaves much to be desired. In order to get the best treatment possible, comprehensive diagnostics are of utmost importance.
Doctors who perform surgery on the cervical spine or lumbar spine have a variety of treatment and modalities but usually try to exhaust conservative measures first. These normally include physical therapy, medication and injections into the affected area.
Often people who have problems with their spine, whether it is degenerative disc disease or a herniated disc, will have some type of surgery which is usually either a laminectomy or a fusion. Sometimes there is implantation of hardware or artificial discs.
An Administrative Law Judge or the Examiner in your Social Security Disability claim decides to what extent you are currently disabled or were disabled. Therefore, proper development of medical evidence about your limitations which are related to spine difficulties is critical. The primary issue becomes to what extent your diagnosed back problems limit your functioning.
You don’t get disability for having a bad back – you get disability for having a bad back that precludes all work activity while taking into consideration your age, education and work experience.
It is also possible to get a “closed period of disability” for any period in excess of 12 months or more when you are unable to work, even if surgery is successful and you are able to return to work as long as you were disabled for at least 12 months.
If you have any questions on this matter or have any other issues, do not hesitate to contact Drummond Disability at 800-842-0426.